Rand Paul's book Government Bullies is the only book I've read so far written by a candidate. Last election I met and supported his father, Ron Paul. So, I was really looking forward to meeting Senator Rand Paul. I noted that volunteers would get front-row seats and a definite opportunity to get a photo with the senator, so...we volunteered again!
The meeting, part of the Iowa 10,000 College Tour, was held at Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa. We ended up holding signs on campus to let people know about the event.
At 5:05, the youth campaign manager spoke. He was followed by the President of the College Republicans, Zach Schulz. Then there was a short video, and Rand Paul took the mic at 5:09.
Miscellaneous Facts: Rand Paul is 52 years old. He is the son of former U.S. Representative and Presidential candidate Ron Paul. His great-grandfather immigrated to the United States from Germany. Paul is a Southern Baptist, has been married to Kelley Ashby Paul since 1990, has 3 children, and is 5 feet 8 inches tall.
|Created with www.readwritethink.org's Timeline Generator. Click to enlarge.|
It would be insane to start a war with Russia, but that's what we're working toward by trying to make a no-fly-zone over Syria. Iraq and Syria have asked Russia to fly over their countries. A no-fly-zone is a dumb idea, and yet many presidential candidates are for it. We've avoided nuclear war with Russia for the past 70 years.
Assad is not a great guy, but the Islamic rebel groups hate us too. We sent arms into this civil war to push Assad back. What happened? ISIS moved in. I'm not sure who are the good and bad guys in Syria, so I'm not ready to send you to fight over there.
The Founding Fathers did not want the power of war to be given to the presidency. They wanted Congress to vote on wars. Our mission is done in Afghanistan. Why are we still there?
Madison said, "History demonstrates what the Constitution supposes." Congress should declare war, not the President. There is a separation of powers, and generally the worst thing happening to our country is the collapse of the separation of powers. The executive branch has taken too much power. In Congress I haven't been able to vote on the major regulations that have come into effect in the last few years.
Take the Waters of the United States, for example. Under it, now 97% of Iowa land is regulated by the federal government. Under the Clean Water Act, a man named Robert Lucas got 10 years in prison for moving dirt on his own property. We all want to protect our environment, but the regulations that portend to do so are absurd.
The federal government has 48 agencies with SWAT (or SWAT-like) teams. The Department of Education has one; the Department of Agriculture has one. You can go to jail for selling milk from a cow.
The government can look at your phone records without a warrant. The man in charge lied to Congress about this, and we would never had known were it not for Edward Snowden, because they lied. Maybe you say, "Why should I care? I don't have anything to hide." We should not give up our right to privacy. As Supreme Court Justice Brandeis said, "One of the most cherished of all rights is the right to be left alone."
The Bill of Rights is important. I stand for all of those rights. It's important not to forget the 4th and 6th. The 6th is trial by jury. Once when I was debating a Senator from Arizona, I asked him, "Would you send a citizen to Guantanamo without a trial?" He said, "Yes, if he's dangerous."
The Justice Department gave a memo on what kind of people are dangerous. Things to watch out for were people who had stains on their clothing, dyed their hair, or paid cash. If you spill coffee on your clothes, you are potentially dangerous.
In the Olympic bombing, Richard Jewell fit the profile of the bomber. Everyone thought he was guilty. But he wasn't.
The Bill of Rights was instituted to protect individuals and minorities. Minorities can be anyone. If you're an evangelical, you're a minority. If you're an atheist, you're a minority. If you wear glasses, you are a minority. We need to protect the rights of minorities; everyone should have a day in court. When the President signed the indefinite detention law, he said, "I'm a good person." But laws should not depend on the person enforcing them being good. Laws should assume that people are bad. The Constitution was written as a chain to bind the government.
Kalief Browder, a black teenager in Brooklyn (accused of stealing a backpack) was held in solitary confinement for 3 years without a trial. He was beaten by gangs and guards. He didn't have anyone to bail him out. There should be a right to a speedy trial.
I will stand for the Bill of Rights.
Q: Where in the Constitution does the President get the power to make all these executive orders? Also, we have $18 trillion in debt we're giving the next generation. Why do young people have to join Social Security?
A: Congress and the courts need to push back when the President tries to take power with his executive orders. When I introduced a bill to get rid of waste and debt in the Social Security system, I got a letter from one young person asking, "Please, just let me opt out!" Galveston county got to opt out of Social Security, and they have their own amazing system. I would like for people to be able to have private accounts. But there is so much resistance; the only way to do that might be to add private accounts to Social Security, so people can have both. It might also be nice to make it so that accounts can be passed down as an inheritance. Social Security has a debt [deficit] of $7 trillion, because we're taking less in than we're paying out. The problem is there are less young people than there are old.
Q: People don't know how to compromise anymore. The divide is great. How can we restore civility?
A: The media portrays it as worse than it is; they feed on controversy. I've worked with Democrats. I'm even cordial and friendly with Senator Reid, though we disagree about 99% of the time. There are times when we have to stand up. Take the appropriations bill. It had trillions appropriated for creating a televised cricket league in Afghanistan. A lot of people don't even have tvs in Afghanistan. The coup de grace was an appropriation for studying whether Japanese quail were more promiscuous under the influence of cocaine. We should have a vote on each program in the bill.
Q: How can we stop this student loan debt bubble while still providing for low income students?
A: The price of education is distorted. The prices of electronics and everything else go down. Education and healthcare go up because the government subsidises them. Let more colleges become accredited, & have more online courses, so prices can go down. We need more of a marketplace. Sanders wants to give you free college. Nothing is free. Ask him for a free car, free food. You'll end up in Cuba. Our country is great because of capitalism.
Further Resources: You can visit Senator Paul's website to learn more about him and read his stance on the important issues. You can also read about him on Wikipedia.
Paul's books are available on Amazon: Government Bullies (2012), The Tea Party Goes to Washington (2011), and Taking a Stand (2015, Audiobook from his filibuster speech).
My Remarks: Senator Paul sounded a lot like his book, which I reviewed here two years ago. Rand Paul seems like a good person, someone you could talk with. He doesn't put on airs. The only thing is, when I go to see a politician, I need/expect some platitudes to start the speech, so I can take photos first, and then bring out my notepad. Paul didn't have any platitudes to share. He was very efficient and got right to the point at the start of his speech. I believe he is sincere and will unwaveringly fight for less government.
Disclaimer: Candidates' speeches are reconstructed from my imperfect notes. If you notice any mistakes, just let me know. I would not intentionally misrepresent anyone's position. I am not endorsing any candidate or candidate's position at this time, and no candidate has endorsed me. And yes, I do realize that often speeches are to some extent propaganda, but it's interesting to me to see the points candidates consider as most important.
For my personal political views, please see this article.
For my personal political views, please see this article.